Monday, December 5, 2011

The "Making of" a Courtney Cap

I've received a lot of fan mail over the last few weeks from people wondering how I make my magazine caps. So I figured I would do a fun little post on how I create these!

Like all caps, first I get an idea. This one came from a post by Terri at Rachel's Haven encouraging members to do a "25 Caps of Christmas" series. I love doing magazine style caps and thought of how I could tie it in with Christmas. What American kid didn't grow up looking forward to looking at the Sears Wishbook every Christmas?! Perfect!

When I first got into making caps, I tried a lot of different programs. Gimp didn't work on my computer for some reason and Photoshop gave me menstrual cramps, so I settled on using Apple's iWork Pages. It's really easy to use since it's mostly drag and drop. Can't do a lot of more advanced graphics, but this suits my needs!

Next comes research. When I do these style of caps, I try to look at as many different examples as possible to get an idea.

Alright, this should be easy! Wishbook covers usually feature a simple photo and not much manipulation. At this point, I'll make a folder on my computer to hold all these graphics.

Now onto the content page. At first I looked at some retro Wishbooks to get some ideas. I found this:

Alright, a lot of random graphics, prices, etc. Wait a minute...what's wrong with this picture? When did the original Gameboy ever have color? WTF! about a more modern page...

Much better! Cleaner and fun. The female side of me thinks the penguin bathroom is cute, but the male side of me makes me wonder why I would want to look at penguins while taking a shit?! about something with fashion!

PERFECT! Nice and clean layout, easy to duplicate, and some of the writing is already there! I'll use this as my landscape. Now comes the most difficult and time consuming part of making caps for me...finding the right pictures.

I can't stress this enough, I've read many GREAT cap stories that had inappropriate photos. I'm REALLY picky about this so I go to great lengths to ensure quality. Since this is a magazine style cap, it's really important that I also find hi-res photos since there may be very little, if any story. I definitely wanted a sexy holiday girl on the cover, so I began my search there. When looking for "Sexy Christmas", this came up:

REJECT! This is part of Courtney Quality Control!

I found a site with some good holiday models. Here were some others I considered:

Well, she's hot but I don't think Sears would put this on their cover!

A little better, but still too racy for the retail season!

I finally found a good photo, so I dragged it into Pages. After finding some graphics such as the Sears logo and text, it was ready to go. Very easy once I had the right photo! Now for the content page.

I spent a little while finding some good photos and graphics for this page. I wanted to stay as true to the original format as possible so I went looking for similar looking items. This is what it looks like when I'm putting something like this together:

After completion, I always try and proofread everything again. I like to edit with the fonts I'm going to use in order. Often I use if I can't find something.

I think this turned out pretty good! Nothing like feminizing guys just in time for the holidays!
Heather69 said...

Wow I am very impressed with how you are creating your captions here Courtney. We can all learn so, so, so much from you in regards to designing captions.

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